Stuck…where do I go from here?

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“stop holding on, if it’s holding you back, then let it go; your grass will always be the greenest if you let it grow” 🌼🐝🌿


This is one of my favorite pictures that I’ve taken recently. You can find cool picture opportunities anywhere! Example: I took this photo in the garden section of Home Depot, lol. I’m going to do a series of picture posts; I have a ton of pictures to share. I went to upload them all into one post and it ended up being 60+ pictures, so I decided I’ll break it up into multiple posts instead. I’m going to start working on those this week, so that by next week I can start posting them.

Other than these posts, I’ve been feeling a little bit stuck in terms of my blog, my bookstagram, and essentially my life as well.  I am trying to get back into bookstagram, but I have no idea what kind of pictures to post and what theme I want to go for. When I first started my bookstagram I had so many ideas and I was having a lot of fun with it. I guess since I haven’t really been doing it consistently over the last couple years, I forgot and lost my creativity with that. With the blog, I’m not sure what kind of content I should post. It’s kind of frustrating!

I think when I start to feel uninspired is usually when I quit things and I don’t want to quit blogging! I actually really love it and love all the friends I’ve made and continue to make every day, but sometimes I feel like I’m boring everyone with the same content over and over again. You know, it’s not even just blogging and bookstagram. I have an online journal that I write about things happening in my life (it’s more of personal journal and I’ve been using it since I was in high school) and I really have nothing to write in my own personal journal either.

I think it has more to do with how I’ve been feeling about myself lately. I have all of these negative feelings (and thoughts) about myself over the last 3-4 months that I’ve never had before. It’s so weird experiencing this because I used to always think so highly of myself. Now I question whether that was even real or if I was pretending/lying to myself all my life. The end months of 2019 messed with my self-confidence and shattered who I thought I was. I only feel like a fraction of who I was before and that scares me! I want to get back to my old self, where I was always positive and always happy. I want to get out of this negative headspace. Some days I think I am finally out of it and then others I feel right back in there. Sigh.

I’ve been obsessed with this song “Hangnail” by Rationale. I feel like I relate to it a lot lately. I just feel down about myself and my life these days. Here’s the song if you’re interested: https://youtu.be/O9sTYRUkSHc

“I wish I had this poetic poise, an articulate finesse.
I’m too clumsy and the words escape me.
I’m hazy and any passing thought can displace me.”

I think this negative headspace; these thoughts and these feelings are pouring into everything in my life, including blogging. I think this is where so much of my “stuck” feeling comes from too. Maybe I can Google search some ideas for both bookstagram and my blog and see what I can come up with! I did bookmark an awesome blog post from Kelly from Another Book in the Wall about “how to blog when you haven’t read anything new“, so I may also go back and reference her post to get some ideas as well. Anything you guys want to see on my blog? It doesn’t have to be book related!


Here are my social media accounts if you’re interested in being friends outside of the amazing blogosphere. I usually post regularly on my personal Instagram account.

Goodreadsheyyitsashley_
Twitter: whoa_itsashley
Pinterestlalalaitsashley
Instagram: heyyitsashley – personal Instagram account
Bookstagram: foreverbookish_ – book Instagram account (underscore after “bookish”)

I will catch up with all of your posts and reply to comments later today or possibly tomorrow. I’m really hoping to try and get some reading in today. 🙂

In case you missed it;
Andy Reads|| Maybe Someday.
March TBR (Maybe).
Wrap Up|| February.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Random|| Life & Reading Update.

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Hey!

It’s been almost two weeks since my last update. I’ve been in a blogging slump, honestly. I’ve also been stuck in my head a little bit. So I’ve been trying to distract myself with reading, TV, games on my iPad, or recently the new Pokémon Sword game on Nintendo Switch. This year has been so weird for me and it’s kind of hard to explain. I guess maybe because there has been so many changes this year. A big one having moved four hours away from my family and not seeing them every single day.

I also feel like my anxiety has gotten so much worse too, which really sucks. I can’t really even tell people about it, because then I just get told I’m making a big deal or I need to “grow up” and to “stop being scared of the world”. 🙄 If it was that easy, then I would have stopped being this way a long time ago. It’s hard and it sucks. I feel lost and not very supported in my real life (outside of the blogging world). Dealing with things on your own is hard sometimes. Not having someone to talk to is hard sometimes. That’s why I get stuck in my head sometimes.

I don’t know if any of this made sense and I’m sorry if it didn’t. This has just been a really weird year for me and most of the time I just can’t put it into words. A lot of great things happened too, but I think my mental health took a hit this year. I’ve never experienced most of these feelings before or if I have, never as bad. It’s new and has been an adjustment, I guess. So I that’s why I’ve been distant around here and also in my real life. It’s been all about distracting myself this year, because if I don’t then I just constantly think about everything that bothers me and it makes me sad.

I decorated my house for Christmas, which I love. Here’s a couple pictures of the outside. Just did a couple touches of Christmas outside. I think we might put up some Christmas lights on our house. I really want to go all out Clark Griswold style, but I doubt that happens LOL. We also put up the Christmas tree too. I haven’t been able to take a good picture of it yet.


And here is a quick little reading update of what I read recently and what I may read next.

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I recently finished reading Autoboyography and The Unhoneymooners both by Christina Lauren. By the way, I just realized that Christina Lauren is TWO PEOPLE! Anyway, I really enjoyed both of these books so much. I need to read more from Christina Lauren.

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I think in my last reading update I said I was going to read Regretting You next, but I ended up reading The Unhoneymooners instead since it was a library book that was going to be returned soon. SOOO, I may be picking up Regretting You today. I am supposed to be getting my copy of The Queen of Nothing (I got the black Barnes & Noble edition) today or tomorrow, so I may also be picking that one up soon too. I’m actually scared to read The Queen of Nothing, because I really thought The Wicked King wasn’t that great. I guess we’ll see what happens!

Well, that’s all for this post. I just wanted to give a quick update on why I haven’t been around too much. I try to hop on to catch up with you guys at least once a week, so I will at some point this week. 🙂

In case you missed it;
Mini Review|| The Wives.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Book Haul|| June.

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Hey!

I made it the entire month without buying any physical books! I’m not counting e-books, because sometimes I can’t control myself when it comes to those e-book deals LOL. Even though I didn’t buy any books, I did get some Fall ARCs from Fierce Reads and Little, Brown Books/The Novl in the mail this month. I didn’t get the chance to take pictures of my books for the blog and bookstagram, but I put the book covers from Goodreads below. You can check out all the books I own over here. There’s also links on that page to my Kindle books and my physical books. I need to update the lists, it’s been a couple months. Enough rambling, here is my June book haul.

Books from Fierce Reads:

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A Blade So Black by L.L. McKinney (September 2018)
Wilder by Andrew Simonet (November 2018)
Black Wings Beating by Alex London (September 2018)
Unbroken by Marieke Nijkamp & Other Authors (September 2018)

I am really stoked that Fierce Reads sent me a package with some Fall ARCs, because I am really looking forward to these. They’ve all been high on my list of books that I want to read.

Books from The Novl:

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Finding Yvonne by Brandy Colbert (August 2018)
The War Outside by Monica Hesse (September 2018)

I am also really excited that I was sent these two books from The Novl. I read Brandy Colbert and Monica Hesse’s other books and enjoyed them, so I can’t wait to read their new books. Finding Yvonne was signed too! There was a note included that said they appreciate me always sending in my reviews, so they wanted to give me a signed copy of Finding Yvonne. That was really cool!

Hopefully I’ll be reading all of these all soon and reviews to come. 🙂 I also have some ARCs from July that I will hopefully read ASAP and get those reviews posted as well. I need to play ARC catch up. Life has just gotten in the way these last couple months. I’m thinking of doing a post (or page on my blog) of all the ARCs and books that I need to read and review. I’ve posted about them in haul posts before, but I think it’ll be nice to have a post to go back to and check the books off of as I read and post the reviews for them.


E-Books:

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Posted by John Davis Anderson
Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts
To the Bridge by Nancy Rommelmann
The Temptation of Adam by Davis Connis
Hate List by Jennifer Brown

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Top Ten by Katie Cotugno
Love, Life, and the List by Kasie West
All Out by Saundra Mitchell & Various Authors
Circe by Madeline Miller
The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom

Okay, so there were a ton of e-books on sale this month that I’ve been really wanting to read. I couldn’t resist getting them. Like the Temptation of Adam, I have been dying for that book to go on sale. I already own a physical copy of Circe, but it was on sale so I decided to just get it because I feel like I’ll finally finish it if I have the e-book (weird logic, I know lol). My hold at the library was at like number 60 in line and I want to finally get it finished before the end of July. I own The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto too, but Mitch Albom is one of my favorite authors and I have all his books on e-book (and physical) so when I seen it on sale I couldn’t pass it up. 😛 I still haven’t read it either, which hopefully I will soon.

What books did you get this month? Have you read any of the ones that I got? Feel free to link me to your posts so I can check them out!

In case you missed it;
Travel|| Topeekeegee Yugnee (T.Y.) Park.
Friday Finds #73.
Book Tag|| Mid-Year Freak Out.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Random|| Life Update.

lifeupdate

Hey!

So I think I am battling a reading slump, which totally sucks! I was flying through books this month. I was making pretty big progress with my June TBR (check it out here). I read seven books (most were graphic novels) and then finished another that I had started in May. That’s eight books I read at the beginning of this month and I read them so fast too and I think I burned myself out, to be honest. My current read Love, Hate, and Other Filters goes back to the library in SIX DAYS and I am not anywhere near to finishing it, because I haven’t been in the mood to read. I am really enjoying it too and that makes it worse, in my opinion.

I also have things happening in my life that are taking over brain space. My mind is elsewhere. I’ve even neglected finishing some school stuff, ugh. I have a lot of things that need to happen in such a short amount of time. I try to stay composed though and realistically, I probably brush off a lot of important things. If things don’t make me happy or things I don’t want to do, then I tend to ignore doing those things for as long as possible. I also have this mindset that whatever happens, happens. I mean, that’s a pretty good mindset…to an extent. It’s good for things that are not really in your control. What’s happening now was totally in my control…

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I am a huge procrastinator, not going to lie. Example: I’ve known I was going to be moving for probably almost a year now and I have done nothing to move the process along to make it go more smoothly. I have three months now and….I’m fucked? Everyday I procrastinate things and then things happen that are no longer in my control and my trusty (not full proof, by the way) motto pops into my head “whatever happens, happens”. So when I say my mind is elsewhere, it’s on what the heck am I going to do about moving?

Where? How? How much is this going to cost? Savings? What savings? Things come up and there goes the savings. What about all the crap the hubby and I own? We own so much damn stuff, ughhh. What happen to minimalism this year? I had plans to toss pretty much all our stuff this year… <— I put that idea to the side and decided i’d come back to it later the next day after thinking it. I have four animals, who’s going to rent to someone with three cats and a dog? I’m sure there is ways around this, but I get paranoid they’ll find out and then we’ll be screwed. BLEHHHH. Life.

What about work? I am socially awkward (hence my blog name) and I also have MAJOR social anxiety…so the fact that I have to talk to my boss about potentially moving away but still REALLY wanting to keep my job is freaking me the hell out. I have the type of job that I can do it from home if needed. I have panic attacks thinking about this. If he says no, then we have to stay here; in this expensive city that realistically we just can’t afford anymore. Or if my boss says no and we still move to the cheaper city that I really want to move to, what am I going to do about a job? I can’t talk to people. SOCIAL ANXIETY SUCKS. I can’t handle finding a new job. Even thinking this is a possibility is scary as hell!

So what do I do when I can’t handle things? I pretend this is all a non-existent thing in my life and go about my life; doing whatever it is that I want to do instead of what I NEED to do. Sometimes I like to think I work harder (maybe even better) under pressure or a deadline, because I literally have no other choice but to do the work now that there is no time to stall or that word again…procrastinate. That’s not a good way to go about life either, by the way. Everything is a lot easier when you give yourself time to actually do things instead of trying to do a million things in a short amount of time on top of your regular life stuff. It only drives you crazy.

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I honestly had no intentions of this post to turn out like this. I was actually going to tell you guys I was in a reading slump and then post pictures that I took while at the park with my sister a couple weeks ago. I am so tired of adulting. Not that I really do much of it aside from pay my bills on time. That’s probably the only thing I got right as far as this adult thing goes. Sometimes I buy vegetables. I think I rambled way too much and I think I needed to just vent this all somewhere.

Anyway, this is part of why I’ve been so MIA on here. It’s also what kick-started this reading slump. I have so many things I need to figure out. I also need to figure out how to get over my fear of talking to my boss, because I really need to do it ASAP. The sooner the better, especially because we need to do know if we’re staying or going. Enough of that though. Here’s a lens ball picture of me that my sister took. I was taking a picture of her taking a picture of me through the lens balls, lol.

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I’ll share all of my other pictures soon. I have some from when my sister and I went to a park. I also have some from when we visited our dad and we went to another park. And then a TON more from the last 2.5 months. I’m sorry if I continue to be a little less active for awhile. This post pretty much explains why and also what my life is going to be like the next few months trying to figure all of this out!

In case you missed it;
Book Tag|| Mid-Year Freak Out.
Thoughts|| Be Prepared.
Thoughts|| All Summer Long.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

 

June TBR {Maybe}.

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Hey!

I am so bad with sticking to TBR lists, but I decided to make one for this month because I have a pretty good idea about what I want to read this month. I’m dedicating this month to a lot of graphic novels and hopefully will also have time for some other books as well. I have quite a few graphic novels that I own that I finally want to read.

Graphic Novels:

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All Summer Long by Hope Larson
Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol
The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang
Wires and Nerve by Marissa Meyer
Maus Vol 1 & 2 by Art Spiegelman (2 to read)
Saga Vol 2, 3, 4, 5 by Brian K. Vaughan (4 to read)

I already read Saga Vol 2 & 3 yesterday and I am currently reading All Summer Long right now. I was able to get volumes 4 & 5 of Saga from the library, but I will eventually be buying my own copies. I love the series so far. I’m nervous about Wires and Nerve, because I didn’t really like the Lunar Chronicles all that much.

Other books if I have time:

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Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo (Library)
The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw (Library)
Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed (Library)
Circe by Madeline Miller

If I have some time this month, then I hope to read these four books and I also want to finish Circe as well. I still have the second half the book to read, but I ended up putting it on hold for now. I’m just not as into it as I thought I would be. I was able to get the e-books from my library, so hopefully I’ll get around to reading some of them before they get returned. The books on this list are books that I have been DYING to read, so I am hoping to get to at least a couple if not all.

This is a pretty big TBR, but I am hoping since I am reading a lot of graphic novels, I’ll be able to fly through them. I read Saga Vol 2 & 3 in one day and I probably could have read 4 & 5 yesterday as well if I hadn’t started something else. 😛 So we’ll see what happens!

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What’s on your June TBR? Have you read any of the ones on my list? Any that you think I should read ASAP?

I hope to catch up with your posts and reply to comments later today or tomorrow if I don’t have time today. 😀

In case you missed it;
Photo A Day|| May 25-31.
Wrap Up|| May.
Book Haul|| May.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Book Haul|| May.

bookhaulyellow

Hey!

I have a pretty small book haul, which is kind of a good thing! My e-book haul on the other hand, that is a little big, lol. 😛 I’m just going to jump right into my haul! You can check out all the books I own over here. I updated my lists last week. There’s also links on that page to my Kindle books and my physical books. Anyway, here are the books that I got this month.

Books I Bought:

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Puddin’ by Julie Murphy
Maus I by Art Spiegelman
Maus II by Art Spiegelman

So happy that Puddin’ is finally out in the world! I have been dying to get my hands on it since I heard there are a Dumplin’ sequel. I wan’t wait to dive into it. I read Emergency Contact this month (which I may have a review coming up) and the MC talked about Maus and how it changed her life and made her want to be come a writer. So I looked it up and I ended up buying the graphic novels, so I can read them.


Books from Publishers & Authors:

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Fire & Bone by Rachel A Marks

I did an Instagram tour/giveaway for Fire & Bone, so the author sent me a copy so I could be apart of that. It sounds really good and I am stoked to read it.

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Not Even Bones by Rebecca Shaeffer (Netgalley)

I said I wouldn’t request any books on Netgalley for awhile, but when I read the description of Not Even Bones, I had to do it. It sounds so good and right up my alley. At first I actually didn’t request it, but when I was browsing Netgalley again it jumped out at me again, so I did it.


E-Books:

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The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding by Alexandra Bracken
Finding Jake by Bryan Reardon
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
The Dangerous Art of Blending In by Angelo Surmelis

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The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
Wicked Like A Wildfire by Lana Popovic
Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley
Words on Bathroom Walls by Julie Walton

So many of these e-books I have been waiting for them to go on sale and finally they did, so my e-book haul is pretty big! I am super stoked for every single one of them.

What books did you get in the month of May? Have you read any of the ones that I got? Feel free to link me to your haul posts if you have one!

I’ll have my wrap up posted in the next couple days. I am hoping to have Circe finished before then, but I’m not sure that will happen since I still have the half of the book to read. I didn’t get much reading done this weekend like I wanted to do.

In case you missed it;
Photo A Day|| 15-24.
Photo A Day|| May 7-14.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

 

Top Ten Tuesday|| Favorite Color Book Covers.

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl.

Books With My Favorite Color On the Cover (or In the Title).


Hey!

The topic for today is books with my favorite color on the cover (or in the title). This is a fun topic this week! My favorite color is PINK. I pretty much love all shades of pink. These ten books are books that I have not read yet, but really want to read. Some of them I own and some of them I don’t own yet.

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Dreamology by Lucy Keating
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne
Tell Me Lies by Carola Lovering
Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index by Julie Israel
Under Rose-Tainted Skies by Louise Gornall

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We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
Forget Me Not by Ellie Terry
A Messy, Beautiful Life by Sara Jade Alan
The Falling Between Us by Ash Parsons
Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi

I am hoping to read The Falling Between Us and Emergency Contact this month. And of course I would love to read all of these books at some point this year. I’ve owned Dreamology and The Wrong Side of Right for awhile now.

What’s your favorite color? Have you read any of the books on my list? Feel free to link me to your posts, so I can check them out!

In case you missed it;
Photo A Day|| May 1-6.
Wrap Up|| April.
Top Ten Tuesday|| Books I’d Slay a Lion to Get Early.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleypink